The Design Business Review

Welcome to a library of articles about the business of design.

You'll find articles about current research, our experience founding and managing a design studio and about insights uncovered during mentoring sessions with Australian designers.

The articles are released weekly via a news-packed EDM. Subscribe via the homepage

Giving honest feedback

Giving honest feedback to creatives is challenging. Design thrives on the unpredictable but small business owners need to reduce risk and deliver predictable results. There lies the conundrum.

The problem with value-add pricing

Value-add pricing is a hot topic but it comes with problems. It’s not the right business model for every client. The skill is identifying the right clients.

Your IP is a revenue stream

The move to digital files has changed the apparent value of our intellectual property. We need to reclaim it as a revenue stream.

What is the most difficult thing about being a designer?

Understanding the challenges of any career is valuable … if someone asked you, what do you think is the most difficult thing about being a designer?

We’ve failed to prove design value

Design isn’t a career known for longevity, leading to many designers questioning their next step – that’s why many build a side hustle.

Designers building side-hustles

Design isn’t a career known for longevity, leading to many designers questioning their next step – that’s why many build a side hustle.

Four powers of design

There are four powers of design that make it effective, design for competitive advantage, design in business, design for new business and design for social impact.

Is AI a threat to designers?

Soft skills make humans indispensable – especially in the creative industry where the ability to communicate with clarity is vital. Infact they’re the skills that differentiate a great leader from an OK one. Question is, are they learned skills or personality traits?

Content clients want from designers

Positioning a creative business to attract (the right) new business is our most-requested activity. It’s an area we enjoy because it’s not complicated, but to be successful you must be forensic with the detail. That’s what makes it interesting…

Getting diversity into a design business

The side hustle has become a popular way to get extra revenue. It’s estimated 7 million Australians have an additional income stream outside their main job.

How and when to close your design studio

Any conversation about pricing eventually turns to talking about retainers — an agreement where a client purchases an agreed amount of a designer’s time each month. This article questions whether retainers only valid for transactional work?

Are retainer fees good for designers?

Any conversation about pricing eventually turns to talking about retainers — an agreement where a client purchases an agreed amount of a designer’s time each month. This article questions whether retainers only valid for transactional work?